My family has a tradition of seeing a movie together in the week leading up to Christmas, and usually there's much discussion beforehand, with arguments and advocates for certain films. But the last two years haven't been contentious: we all knew we'd see The Hobbit, conveniently broken into (bombastic) pieces as it was.
And last year, as I was on Christmas Eve dinner duty, I thought I'd cook up a surprise after our movie experience: a full hobbit dinner! Here's what I made, in case you might be inspired to do something similar after the final chapter of the trilogy.
A Menu for a Hobbit Party
It wasn't difficult to work up a hobbit menu. After all, hobbits eat very much like we do, with an emphasis on the cozy and the home-baked. Add in an element of pulling out all the last bits in the larder, as Bilbo did in the first chapter of The Hobbit, with dwarf after dwarf after unexpected dwarf tumbling over his doorstep, and you have a hearty meal.
Hobbits also just happen to eat food that has more than a passing similarity to homestyle English cooking, so if you want more recipe inspiration, I suggest turning to an old-fashioned English cookery book, such as those by Jane Grigson.
Unfortunately, a year on, I don't remember the sources of all of these recipes! But I'll note what I remember.
- Scones with butter and jam: Sara Kate's Irish scones are a beautiful option for traditional scones.
- Cheese and bread: I bought a rustic whole wheat loaf and some sharp Cheddar.
- Mushroom pies
- Boiled potatoes
- Salad with herbs and hard-boiled eggs
- Roast chicken and pickles: Both purchased.
- Lemon poppyseed cakelets
- Mincemeat handpies: Adapted from Eccles cakes.
- Molasses cake: From my own recipe for Dark Molasses Gingerbread Cake.
A proper hobbit meal needs plenty of drinks!
- Hot tea
- Red wine
- Porter and ale
- Mulled cider
I kept things pretty simple at the table, with lots of tall candles, a bit of greenery, and Christmas crackers and place cards for everyone. The only catch? Everyone had a dwarf name on their card (exception: my dad presided as Gandalf).
It was a pretty fabulous night — my family is just geeky enough to know The Hobbit nearly by heart, so there was much merriment.